Dance of Love

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What if it is all you?
The uncanny beauty
of this world it seems impossible
to imagine we have the fortune of visiting
and making a home, and a life
of days and years, here.
It gives you all of your impressions,
and you give it everything you have,
the breath flows naturally between you,
as the sacred art and being of nature.
What if nature’s way is your way,
her tumults and great gentility, yours?
Her angry sputtering, great waves heaving,
tiniest buds sprouting, old rocks waiting,
what if you can find yourself here?
And then, when you don’t know
what to do, how to again begin
the motions of starting over,
what if you allow yourself to pause
in Time, which goes nowhere without you,
and bring your feet to the earth,
which is here to hold you,
and enter the rhythms that have never
stopped calling out to meet you,
until you know that there is nothing,
at all, that you need to do,
because it is life’s way to keep living,
and nature’s way to keep creating,
and our way to keep allowing,
freely, wildly, until the struggle against,
becomes a flow with our dance of great love.
 
– Tammy Takahashi
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Open eyes, Open heart

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There is always more
we can strip away,
we have accumulated
so much. For so long.
We’ve buried ourselves
in the things that remove
from us the way of
right seeing, the seen.
We have inherited
and then we’ve created
stories that adorn,
tantalize, haunt us,
give us the false impression
that this is who we are,
that bare their claws
like tentacles around
our well-meaning hearts
just as they catch a
glimpse of a free world,
and an unencumbered way
of being at one with it.
We know that the way
back to this, our world
is the way into ourselves,
but we don’t know
where to rest our gaze
among a dizzying array
of options, and directions.
Hearts beating fast, we rest.
Close our eyes. Breathe.
Allow what haunts to haunt.
Enter the fear like warriors.
Quiet the stories ricocheting
in our bodies’ chambers,
as if to honor their passing.
Open our eyes. Begin.
 
– Tammy Takahashi

Surrender, Love

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The day comes
for our surrender,
which is never defeat;
would we ever call
the sun’s glorious drop
from our hope-filled view
a loss, a giving up, a forfeit?
Is the moon defeated
as she drapes the sky
with her incandescence,
emblazons passing clouds,
transgresses the borders
of the known and unknown,
taking us there with her
before ceding, with grace,
to the light of the coming day?
May I one day understand
that stillness is not death,
but the cessation of a mind
feeding itself on my burdens,
running me dry, tossing me out,
burning me to crumbling ash.
May I one day fall to earth,
feel the nourishment so deeply,
let the thoughts come
let the thoughts go,
and know, and trust
that in the silence
of the innermost part
of my being,
everything I need remains,
that in stillness, nothing is lost,
and there is room for this,
this love, to consume me.
– Tammy Takahashi

A Lesson in Surrender {There’s No War in World}

Tammy T. Stone

Tammy T. Stone

A Lesson in Surrender

(India)

It was just before dawn and  we were waiting for a train. We’d gotten off our night train a few stops early, hoping to make an easy and fast connection en route to Dharamsala, our destination.

We were told the next train out was two hours later than we’d hoped. So we sat down and idled, half chatting and half dozing, as the sun rose and cast everything at the station in a gorgeous gleam of dramatic light and shadow.

Moments later, a young guy helped us find our platform and became our new guardian. He informed us, just as we were about to give up on the ever-later train and try to find the bus station, that it would surely arrive within half an hour. So we waited, and I was cajoled out of my irritation when my husband brought us Nescafe from a snack stall nearby.

Not seconds later, cheered by the coffee into remembering that life is amazing and that we had no actual deadline – one could say I surrendered to the situation – our guardian shouted, ‘the train, it’s arriving!’ I wholeheartedly believe that it was the act of surrendering that brought the train chugging along in our direction.

Many hours later we arrived at Dharamsala. We were now only one bus ride away from mountain that would become our home for a few weeks; it was approaching twilight, and we still needed to find a place to stay for the night. Once again we had to wait. Immediately, two little children, a girl and a younger boy with a lame leg, tapped us for money. My husband gave the girl some coins and the boy came to my side, tapping my leg in hopes of some return. I kept saying, ‘sweetheart, we gave you guys something,’ but my husband mused that maybe the two kids were each on their own. I tried to get bananas for them, but the guy was charging almost double the going rate and I’d been in India too long to accept this (I forgot to surrender).

I had no coins left in my wallet. Then my husband remembered we had a battered, taped-together five rupee bill. Why not, we thought. I handed the boy the bill and he immediately went to show it off to the girl. They appraised it and, confused (about whether anyone would accept the bill), showed it to the shoe repair guy nearby for his opinion.

They all scrutinized the bill, and the shoe guy might have said it was no good. My heart dropped into my stomach. I wanted the bill to work! The shoe guy took off with the bill while the little girl filled her metallic bowl with water from a nearby pump (that would have sent us to the hospital) and took a few sips. The shoe guy was at one of the snack stalls, and finally returned with a newer five rupee bill for the kids.

We were completely out of the picture by this point. This tiny bus station was their unique world. The kids huddled around him gleefully. He went back to work and the kids squatted as though around a bonfire with their new prize.

I still don’t know who surrendered the most in this story of compassion and industry, and I will always stumble over how it came to be that these kids have to live at a bus stand begging for scraps.